SKY’s Christmas present for Disney fans

SKY and The Walt Disney Company Australia and New Zealand today announced that new channel Disney XD will launch as part of SKY’s basic package on Wednesday, December 24, 2014, at 6 a.m.

Disney XD is the ultimate destination for kids aged 6-14, featuring an exciting mix of live-action and animation – including new content from Lucasfilm and Marvel – which transports viewers into different worlds full of humour, unexpected fun, and inspiring action-filled adventures.

SKY’s Director of Entertainment, Travis Dunbar, says Disney XD’s inclusion to SKY’s family line-up is quite literally the perfect Christmas present for customers.

“Disney is renowned as the leading entertainment content provider on the planet with creative and compelling programmes such as Star Wars Rebels, Ultimate Spider-Man and Avengers Assemble, and it’s great to have all of this brilliant content and more available to our customers as part of SKY’s basic package. Christmas is all about family, and not only is this an exciting addition to our line up, but I’m picking it might just up the ante for the battle of the remote this Christmas – it certainly will in our house!” he said.

“New Zealanders have a strong affinity and connection with Disney’s stories and characters,” said Leisa Sadler, General Manager, Disney Channels, The Walt Disney Company Australia and New Zealand. “Disney is thrilled to join with SKY to bring Disney XD, which offers the very best in family entertainment, action and comedy, to Kiwi families. Disney XD features some of the world’s most iconic characters with new stories and adventures from Marvel and Star Wars.”

To kick off the launch of Lucasfilm’s new animated series Star Wars Rebels, Disney XD will feature the exclusive premiere of hour-long special Star Wars Rebels: Spark of Rebellion featuring a cameo by Darth Vader (voiced by the legendary James Earl Jones). The critically-acclaimed Star Wars Rebels takes place in the time between Episodes III and IV, and has already been renewed for a second season.

In addition, it has just been announced that production has begun on the animated series Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, featuring the hugely popular characters introduced in the record-breaking Marvel Studios film of the same name.

Disney XD delivers a triple shot of comedy, action and adventure. The programming includes series, movies and short-form, as well as sports-themed programming developed with ESPN. Customers will also be able catch up on their favourite Disney shows at www.skygo.co.nz as Disney XD will be joining Disney Channel and Disney Junior on SKY’s online catch-up service available on PCs and laptops.

Key Disney XD programming includes Marvel animated series such as Ultimate Spider-Man, Avengers Assemble and Hulk: The Agents of S.M.A.S.H. Disney XD will also feature animated series such as new series The 7D, Gravity Falls, and Phineas and Ferb, as well as live-action comedies Mighty Med, Lab Rats, Kickin’ It, and Crash & Bernstein.

3 News celebrates 25 years……and yes there are bloopers

TV3’s flagship daily news bulletin was first broadcast at 6pm on 27 November 1989, providing New Zealanders with their first alternative home-grown television news service. Fast forward to 2014 and 3News is the cornerstone of a 24-hour multi-platform news and current affairs service.

3News at 6pm is broadcast daily on TV3, RadioLIVE, and a range of digital platforms, with 2.17 million Kiwis tuning into a 6pm bulletin each month on television alone.*

Marking 25 years of news and current affairs coverage, TV3 will screen a series of retrospective mini-documentaries on 3News at 6pm, beginning Sunday 23 November for five nights. The documentaries examine the network’s coverage of significant events, personalities and stories that have shaped New Zealand and the world. They will run nightly during the 6pm bulletin and will be narrated by current 3News presenters.

The coverage begins with the first 3News broadcast on 27 November 1989, then looks at the critical moments in our history, including political, international and domestic events. There is also a selection of comedic on-air mishaps and iconic moments that have occurred in the network’s news broadcast history.

On November 23, 3News will also launch a microsite at 3News.co.nz/25years featuring an interactive timeline containing important news events and coverage from the last 25 years, career-defining stories from 3News presenters, blooper reels, behind-the-scenes images and more.

Director of News and Current Affairs Mark Jennings says: “3News has changed the news landscape in New Zealand. We have broken hundreds of stories in politics, sport, entertainment, business and general news. Reporters and presenters including John Campbell, Mike McRoberts, Hilary Barry, Carolyn Robinson, Samantha Hayes, Michelle Pickles, Hamish McKay, Bob McNeil, Melanie Reid, Joanna Paul, and Belinda Todd have become household names.

“We have always looked to take our viewers to the heart of the news. We’ve sent reporters to the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Gaza, covered the Pacific extensively, and been on every All Black tour for as far back as I can remember. Sometimes we have been the only New Zealand news organisation on the scene.

“We have always been innovators – from the days of Nightline to our latest project, the early morning show with Paul Henry that will be available on TV, radio and online.”

“I am very proud of all the presenters, reporters, camera crews, editors, directors and other staff who work extremely hard every day to provide viewers with the world class product that is 3News.”

Stories will air across the following dates;

•23rd November – Retrospective look at the first episode and beginning moments of 3News
•24th November – Iconic bloopers and lighter moments from 3News coverage and presenters
•25th November – Notable political stories and misadventures by Parliamentary officials
•26th November – International stories and events that have shaped our world
•27th November – Local stories and events from New Zealand

For more check out 3news.co.nz/25years

Virgin take ABC News sky high

Virgin Australia and ABC Commercial have today announced an innovative partnership giving passengers exclusive access to daily ABC news bulletins across the airline’s international and domestic network for the first time.

Passengers travelling on board the airline’s Boeing 737 and Embraer 190 fleet, which service more than 33 destinations domestically, will be able to stream dedicated daily news direct to their own devices from early 2015. The exclusive content, made up of four separate 90-second news bulletins, will be available through Virgin Australia’s pioneering wireless in-flight entertainment app, which was the first of its kind in the Asia Pacific region when it launched in 2013.

Three 15-minute ABC News bulletins covering news and weather, sport, business and finance, were also introduced to Virgin Australia’s wide-body fleet earlier this month, through the airline’s award-winning seatback entertainment system, Red.

Virgin Australia’s Chief Customer Officer Mark Hassell said: “The Virgin brand was born in entertainment and has a long history of leading this space. Today we are delighted to be taking our in-flight content offering to the next level with one of the most comprehensive and reputable news services in Australia.

“We continue to enhance the customer experience both on the ground and in the air and by delivering valuable, unique and trusted Australian news content on a daily basis we will ensure our customers reach their destination informed of the latest current affairs. We are delighted to be working with the ABC to better service the needs of our business and leisure travellers and look forward to continuing to expand this unique offering into the future,” Mr Hassell said.

Director of ABC Commercial, Robert Patterson, said: “I am thrilled that ABC Commercial are to partner with Virgin Australia and offer such a great news service, along with the variety of ABC comedy, drama and children’s programming to travellers on Virgin Australia flights.”

Head of ABC News Content, Gaven Morris said: “ABC News is excited to partner with Virgin Australia to provide Australia’s most trusted and comprehensive news service to travellers across Australia and the world. Every day we’ll keep Virgin Australia’s passengers informed with news, analysis and weather as well as business and sport updates.”

Virgin Australia’s wireless In-Flight Entertainment app has been downloaded more than 1.4 million times since January 2013. The app can be downloaded on Apple iOS devices (iPad®; iPhone®; iPod touch®), Android devices (phone or tablet) and Windows laptops through the relevant app stores.

Three60 reaches 100th episode milestone

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TV3’s weekly international news programme Three60 celebrates its 100th episode this Sunday, November 23rd at 9.30am.

The programme is New Zealand’s only comprehensive weekly review of international news, enriched with comments and opinions from a wide range of New Zealand based experts.

TV3’s Director of News and Current Affairs, Mark Jennings says, “New Zealand has always been a country that has looked outward – we are great travellers and are deeply interested in other countries cultures and world affairs. Three60 reflects that interest and is steadily growing its audience.”

Three60 presenter Mike McRoberts adds, “There’s really no other show like it on TV at the moment – it gives viewers the chance to catch up on the week’s biggest international stories and have them put into context by an impressive array of local commentators.

“Having travelled around the globe reporting on some of the world’s biggest stories it’s great to be part of show that focuses each week on the most important international news.”

MediaWorks launched the show in May 2012 with support from sponsor Massey University.

Massey’s Assistant Vice-Chancellor (External Relations) Cas Carter says the partnership with Three60 continues to deliver quality thought provoking television in a fast changing media environment.

“Massey is continually building on its international connections and deepening its collaborations with key international partners to generate new knowledge and find solutions to the big issues that challenge us all. So it is very important to have a platform for intelligent analysis and debate of global affairs.

“We commend TV3 for recognising the need for this programme and congratulate them on reaching the 100th milestone.”

The 100th show this coming Sunday, will be the final one for 2014 as the show breaks the holiday period, and will be taking a closer look at Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to NZ and also review some of the major international stories to hit the headlines this year, including IS, Gaza, Ukraine and Ebola.

NZME. Sorry for ‘attempt at humour’

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NZME. has apologised for causing outrage on Twitter after what it calls a poor attempt at humour.

Dean Buchanan the Managing Director of NZME. Radio told Dan News

“Apparently this was an attempt at humour – it’s not funny and it’s not acceptable and we apologise for any offence.”

Staff of NZME. were distancing themselves from the statement.

“We don’t all think like that” one employee tweeted in response to Hilary Barry who said she was proud to be ugly and respectful of other people’s work.

Buchanan went further and personally apologised via Twitter:

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Boeing Presents Original Flight Test 787 Dreamliner to Museum of Flight

ZA003 Ceremony at MoF

Boeing and its employees joined the Puget Sound community today in celebrating the donation of one of the original 787-8 Dreamliner flight test airplanes to the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

“Boeing is committed to supporting and giving back to the communities where our employees work and live,” said Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Ray Conner. “By placing this airplane in the Puget Sound area, members of the Boeing team and their families will see it displayed locally, and it will hopefully inspire a new generation of aviation enthusiasts here in Washington state.”

The Dreamliner Boeing donated to the museum is known as ZA003, the third 787-8 produced. The airplane has a unique past, first as part of the 787 flight test and certification program and later circumnavigating the globe several times in 2011 and 2012 during the Dream Tour, which introduced the 787 to more than 68,000 visitors in 23 countries.

“This revolutionary airplane caps the museum’s collection of historic commercial airplanes, beginning with our 1932 Boeing 247, which was the first all-metal, modern airliner,” said Doug King, president and CEO, Museum of Flight. “It was followed by our 1969 prototype 747, the first jumbo jet, and now with the first composite airliner, the 787. It’s an incredible addition to our comprehensive display.”

The celebration at the Museum of Flight included several Boeing employees whose work over the years played a role in the design, build and test of the 787 Dreamliner. Each person disembarked the airplane and presented a special artifact tied to the history of the airplane to museum docents and students from local high schools.

The artifacts given by employees ranged from a commemorative cachet carried aboard the 787’s first flight, to early artist renderings of the 7E7. Those artifacts will now be housed at the Museum of Flight.

ZA003 is the first of three flight test 787-8s Boeing plans to share with museums around the world, the aviation community and future generations of employees and airplane enthusiasts.